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Jimmer Fredette is at home in Denver, Colo. now, spending time with his family and working out to stay in shape for the season. 

The 32-year-old New York native, who played his college basketball at BYU in Utah, moved to Colorado after he and his wife — who is from the area — got married. 

He's played professional basketball since 2011, so this is the first time he has been at home during this time of the year. 

"I haven't been here in Denver at this time of the year ever," Fredette said during a phone interview with Fastbreak on FanNation on Friday.

He spent all of last season playing in China for the Shanghai Sharks, where he had to be in a bubble for seven months because of COVID-19 pandemic protocols, and he was not able to see his family during that time period. 

In China, he averaged 27.3 points per game, shot over 40% from the three-point range and even had a game where he dropped 70 points. 

Fredette says that he had a lot of teams calling him at the beginning of the season, including teams in China and throughout Europe.  

"Intentionally, I decided I want to take a little bit of time off in the beginning of the season," he said. "Last year, it was something crazy. It was seven months in China in a bubble. I was in a hotel room for seven months, didn't see my family or my kids my once. I just played basketball and went back to the hotel room."

At one point during the summer, the Denver Nuggets announced that Fredette would play for their Summer League team in Las Vegas, Nevada. 

Fredette said the Nuggets asked him if he wanted to come play, because they didn't have a lot of players ready to play at that time due to COVID-19 cases. 

However, he did not end up playing in the Summer League. 

"The Problem was my Chinese team had my rights still," he said. "So I had to go through FIBA and my Chinese team to give up the rights, and all that stuff that goes on behind the scenes and it just was going to be too quick of turnaround."

Fredette still plans on playing basketball somewhere this season.

"I know at some point I'm going to sign a contract and go over with a team and finish up the season," he said. 

He also knows that if he had played in the Summer League, he would have been ready for the task at hand. 

"Of course, I believe that I can play in the NBA and help a team and do great things if given an opportunity," Fredette said. "At the same time, I understand that there's a lot of younger players out there and guys that they're looking at. 

"But if I could have gone and played well and had lightning strike in the bottle, you never know what could have happened. It would have been fun to be able to do. Unfortunately, it didn't workout, but I do believe that if I went and played and was able to go do it, I would have played well. I was in shape, I was ready to go, I was excited about it, it just didn't quite work out." 

Fredette was a national star in college at BYU during the 2010-11 season, his senior year,  when he won the National Player of The Year and led the country in scoring at 28.9 points per game. 

However, when he played, college players could not make money off their image and likeness like they can now.

"I definitely would have made a nice amount of money my senior year," he said. 

He notes that there will be challenges in kids having to be more of a professional now, but is very in favor of the NIL rule change. 

"I think it's great that they're able to make money on their name," he said. "They should be able to. Everyone in the world is able to except for college athletes, and now they can. That's a great thing for the community and for the kids. 

"It's just about being able to continue to focus on things besides just social media and trying to find that endorsement deal. You've still gotta be on the court or the field making sure that you're taking care of your business and getting better. If you're a guy that can make it to a higher level, you're going to be making a lot more money on that end, but there are a lot of kids that won't make much more money playing sports, so it's great that they can cash in at this time."

Fredette started his NBA career on the Sacramento Kings after being drafted tenth overall in the 2011 NBA Draft. 

He played parts of three seasons in Sacramento, and while he did not get to shine the way he did in college, he had outstanding shooting numbers during his second and third seasons in the NBA. 

During his second season (2012-13), he shot just under 42% from the three-point range, and in his third season (2013-14), he shot nearly 48% from the three-point range. 

In fact, before the Kings traded him to the Chicago Bulls that season he had shot over 49% from the three-point range in 44 games for the Kings. 

He was on the trajectory to being at worst, a solid role player in the NBA. 

"I felt like I was doing well that third year," he said. "I felt like I was getting better and I was feeling more comfortable and then didn't play a whole lot, and then got into a situation where I didn't perform the way that I should have and didn't get the minutes that I thought I was going to."

Fredette found himself in an interesting spot in the NBA, where he was a well-known player because of his college superstardom, but was a bench player in the pros. .  

Sometimes teams don't want to have a high-profile player getting limited minutes.  Think about quarterback Cam Newton in the NFL and Carmelo Anthony when he was not signed in 2018-19.

If he was a more unknown player at the time, he may have been given more of an opportunity to be a bench player in the NBA. 

"Honestly, I think so, yes," he said. "It's not easy when you have such a following when you're on the end of a bench, and people start chanting your name to come in, which has happened to me a lot in the NBA,'' Fredette said. "Coaches don't like that, and I understand, I understand why. They don't want to be told what to do, and they don't want to hear that from a person that they necessarily don't think should be out on the floor. They're making that decision concisely, and they don't want someone to have pressure to do that, and I completely understand it.''

He's sure it impacted his playing time and spots on the roster at various stops. 

"I understand that mindset, but for me, it did probably hurt me some,'' he said. "If I am end-of-the-bench guy, you're going to feel that type of pressure from a coach, and that's just the kind of the way that it is. It's unfortunate, but it's the reality of the situation, so I can't necessarily complain about that.

" I appreciate the fans, I appreciate the support that they have given me throughout my career. They still support me all the way to this time, but I yeah, definitely, I think that goes into making a decision as an NBA organization." 

He spent time over six seasons on the Kings, Bulls, New Orleans Pelicans, New York Knicks and Phoenix Suns, and his career averages in the NBA were 6.0 points, 1.4 rebounds and 1.0 assists in 241 games.

Recently, he has loved his time playing in China, where he has played four seasons over his career, and thinks that it is a great place for his style of play. 

"China is my type of basketball," he said. "It fits my game perfectly." 

Fredette has always been mentally tough through all of his ups and downs as a basketball player. He learned to be tough at a young age — in an unusual enviroment for a teenager.

When he was in high school, his older brother knew the guy who ran the recreation area of the local prisons. 

They were asked if they wanted to play the inmates. He had to sign a waiver, and because of his age, his father would have to take him. He would play against the inmates who were on good behavior. 

"I've never been more intimidated in a basketball game in my life than playing in the prisons when you first start playing," he said. "There are (prison) guards on each corner with their rifles and everything."

Years later, some of the guards allowed the inmates to watch his BYU games in the prison. 

"It definitely helped with mental toughness for sure," he said. "If you got fouled or something hard, you weren't going to say anything." 

He didn't do it often, but it helped his mental toughness. 

"It's like if I could play there, I don't care if I'm at San Diego State, some of these kids are yelling at me with whatever it is, and I'm like I couldn't care less about you guys yelling at me,'' Fredette said. "That's the fun part that's not nearly as intimidating than what I had played against before." 

After dominating in China last season, Fredette still has plenty of years of high-level basketball left in him, either in the NBA, China or anywhere else.